Ever since I was young, my grandma made the best tacos...if you are from around the Des Moines metro area and have had Tasty Tacos, like those, but far less grease. That fried flour shell was always delicious, stuffed with seasoned meat and then topped with any number of toppings: tomatoes, onions, sour cream, lettuce and cheese. As I grew to cooking on my own and m grandma got older and less able to do what she used to, I started asking for the recipe. She would try to show me, but every time it was a little different and I could never get mine just like hers.
Enter Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day. First I started with just the easy baking of rolls and chewy breads on a whim, then graduated to experimenting with what else I can do with it. From pizza to naan to cinnamon rolls, I was on a roll. Then came the brilliant idea to try to use the dough for grandma's fried tacos. The chewiness of the finished boule lent itself to the same consistency of the tacos of my childhood. I apologize now for the lack of pictures; I am posting from my iPad and have yet to figure out loading pictures. I will try to load some later once the house is back to normal.
To make the tacos you need a batch of the artisan bread boule ready and chilled, as well as 1 pound of taco meat cooked up. Now, I have done this in the crockpot as of late, as it takes a while to fry all these puppies up, and honestly, this time of year recommend getting out the turkey fryer and doing it outside if you have the capability. Less heat in the house, the better.
You start by pulling off a lemon-size chunk of dough and using your hands flattening it. You might need to add some flour to make it workable. Won't hurt anything. You want to flatten to a circle (or something like it) about 1/8 to a 1/4 in thick. Continue by putting just a tablespoon or two of your filling in (vegetarians you can totally go beany here instead of meat, too) the center of half of the circle, then fold over so you have a half circle. Use your fingers to crimp the edges lightly, just so the filling is held in while you are frying.
You need your oil around 350 degrees, and then you can fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towels and keep warm until you are ready to serve. To serve, just gently pry the tacos open and fill with your favorite tacos toppings...fresh salsa, lettuce, cheese, tomato, onions, black olives, sour cream, peppers...you name it. These are great reheated for lunch the next day, too, IF you have any leftovers. This was a favorite at the AB in 5 class I taught several months ago.
Now, you have hot oil and bread dough, and a hankering for dessert? No problem! Next you can fry up some Nutella tacos. Yes, you read that right. Do the same thing as you did to get your dough ready for the taco filling, but this time put in Nutella instead, or my husband likes a sweetened cream cheese and strawberries in his. Fold over, press, fry, drain, but while still hot after draining, sprinkle with powdered sugar. So good. I came up with that quick donut recipe one day when I had just enough dough left after making tacos for just a few more, but no filling. Never one to waste bread, and always looking for new ways to insert Nutella into every meal, voila!
We've also made breakfast fried tacos-same procedure, but change out the taco filling for scrambled eggs, meats, veggies and cheese. Delicious! You can easily make up the eggs the night before and just store them in the fridge for easy work the next morning.
That Artisan Bread dough is amazing stuff, isn't it?